Pushbuttons compatible with 3/4 inch wood?


Hey guys - ran a search and couldn’t find anything, so I thought I’d ask.

I’m building a joystick housing, and near the end of the journey. Only problem I’m having so far, is that I initially planned on swap modding the Hori FS3, so I ordered the Sanwa snap-in buttons, fit for like, mm thick sheet metal. Oops :smiley:

So now I’m looking for a set with mounting nuts on LizardLick - trouble is, I can’t gauge from the photos exactly how deep the buttons run.

Two in particular I was wanting to get were the OBSN-24 from Sanwa or the PS-14-DN 24mm from Seimitsu. Can anyone tell me whether or not they will directly mount on a 3/4 thick panel? If not, I suppose I can tinker out a way to fit them, but still - I’m curious! Thanks :smiley:

~The Boob


japanese screw ins will not fit 3/4 at all, what you can do though it route a large opening in the 3/4 and use a much smaller layer on top of it to hold the buttons.


Agreed, create a large opening for all the buttons then fit acrylic on top (which you can fill with some nice art too).


Thanks guys =]

That’s the way I had planned it, with two different sized boring bits. In the back of my head, I had no effin’ clue whether it would work, though. Thanks for the affirmation. :smiley:

Now, for future reference, what size will the JPN screw-ins fit? I was testing panels at the hardware store, and it seemed like the thinnest I would want to go is a 1/2 inch. It seemed sturdy enough to take abuse from mutton mashing, but I’m not sure. What do you think?

I also tried some 1/4, and while it seemed moderately durable, there was a lot of bowing in the 2x4ft panel. I assume it might work differently scaled down to say 9x14in - but then again, I’m a crack head.

Now what’s this talk about plexi? I’m all ears, if you’re willing to give me a quick heads up =]

~The Boob



I did a little research, and it looks like the best bet would be 1/16 plexi for the JPN snap-in buttons; think that’s right? Eying it, sure - but if anyone has exact knowledge, that would be good, too.

So now I understand that, but I don’t exactly understand how to put artwork on there. I assume you would go get the work sized and laser printed, then place it on top of the wooden panel and below the plexi, then attach the plexi to the wood.



Yep. Here is an example.



I know they’re not too popular around these parts, but Happ buttons fit wood up to some absurd thickness like an inch and a half or something. In any case they went through my 3/4" MDF with lots of room to spare.


Hey, thanks Warlock. Yeah, I hear that Happ buttons are pretty insensitive compared to their Japanese counterparts, but I’m not sure if there would actually be any distinct disadvantage to that. Other than preference, I can’t see how having to mash on the button any harder would prove to be a handicap - unless you forget and your moves end up not coming out (ala DSP).

I’m using 3/4 MDF for the top panel, too. Seemed like a dense enough material, and it hand sands down very nicely.

I see that the box linked above uses a system of dowels; I opted for using a miter to 45 degree the edges into a corner, then use brass braces on the inside corners, along with a tiny dab of wood putty to fill the half millimeter cracks on the outside corners. I had thought about doubling up the durability by using wood glue to bind the frame, but after I got the braces attached, I was surprised at how well that damned thing stood up to abuse - so no need. :smiley:


I’m a little unclear about how to form cut acrylic/Plexiglas. I assume that all I would need is a glass cutting bit for a dremel, but again, I’m not sure. So some advice would be helpful =]


to make straight cuts across you just score a line and break it across. For holes you use a forstner bit at low speeds.


Thanks, FunkyP(hresh). =]

Sounds awesome.


FunkyP is correct in that you SHOULD be able to just score and break after enough passes. Just in case, I’m going to share my experience as a total novice trying to do it by hand.

The Lexan cutting knife I purchased recommended 5-6 passes before attempting to break. 5-6 passes barely put a dent in it. So I did about 15 more. By this point, my wrist was starting to cramp, and I slipped my way into an improper cut that went beyond my protective tape guide Attempting to break the Lexan then, despite the long, even score which WAS deep enough, left me with a wavy edge at one point. The point that waved outwards was no problem to just sand or plane down. However, part of it dipped too far inward, making it unsuitable to fit.

This could be due to my ineptitude and the resilience of the polycarbonate, might be different if you’re just using acrylic. But I had much greater success later with two methods. One was the cutting wheel attachment for a dremel. Just set up a solid guide to keep you in the score and it works fine. Barring that, I also tried for fun just using the handsaw that came with my mitre box and used the scoring line as a guide, worked out very well. Just trying to save you some of the frustration of wasted material and nearly smacking myself in the face when trying to break the Lexan along the line.

Good luck!

Edit: Just as a quick addendum to the original point of the post, I have a TE stick, and am finishing up my handmade custom Sanwa very shortly. I love the Sanwa parts. That said? Ain’t nothing wrong with building something with Happ buttons. They’re cheap, they do the job, and they’re sturdy as all get-out. My first custom box was a lapdesk drilled out with happ parts. I’m transferring those parts over to a 2 player standing panel very soon because I still enjoy playing old arcade games the way I remember them as a kid in the American arcades.


Thanks a lot, Jack. I only plan on using 1/16 acrylic, so I can’t see how I would have any problems getting through that with a hand saw. I rethought the dremel, though, and I realized I don’t have a steady enough hand with it to cut a straight edge.

And you mentioned a mitre; I’m glad! Not sure if you’ll ever read this, but I’ve got a question concerning mitre saws. I’ve tried two different units now, and they all cut with an imperfection - and even though it’s very slight, it’s slight enough to throw off the dimensions of the entire project, and the cuts make it impossible to fit a box.

It can’t be anything I’m doing, because the angle swivel on the base has an auto-lock on it, where it snaps into place every 15 degrees. Have any ideas what might be setting it off like that? I don’t have a camera right now to snap any pictures, but I can describe it to you.

Imagine taking a 1x2x4 to mitre cut a 45 degree angle into. You set the swivel to 45, and make a straight cut all the way through. Take the board on the opposite end of the cut, put it against a level surface and stand the piece up in a straight line.

Now at the top, where the cut should be level all the way through, it’s not. Man, I just can’t figure that crap out.


Happ parts are ridiculously easy to work with. I built my first stick a year ago, and with a Happ stick and buttons, I could get by with just a hole saw (no router!) and bottom-mount everything. And the stuff is still a lot better than I’d get from a cheap storebought stick.

I plan to do a stick with Sanwa parts eventually, but Happ parts are great to start out on.